A meta-package is a special kind of package that does not contain files. Instead it contains dependency information which is typically used to let the package manager know we wish to install multiple packages. For instance, many distributions have a KDE or GNOME package which downloads the many packages required to assemble the entire desktop environment. The Kali Linux team has reworked some of their meta-packages to be more flexible and hopefully reduce download requirements. "Depending on how you use Kali will determine which meta-package would suit you best. This is the power of meta-packages. For example: If you want a core set of tools, stick with kali-linux-default (designed for assessments that are straightforward). If you want a more general and wider range of tools, select kali-linux-large (useful if Internet access is permitted but slow). If you want to be prepared for anything, go with kali-linux-everything (great if you are going to be doing air-gap/offline work). Note: You can install multiple meta-packages at once and are not limited to just one, so mix and match!" Further details can be found in the distribution's blog post.
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